Noosa Council’s Go Noosa transport and traffic trials officially start tomorrow to coincide with the beginning of the Queensland school holidays.
In an effort to make it easier to get around this holiday season, a raft of new initiatives will be trialled all the way through to the Australia Day long week.
Mayor Tony Wellington said the aim of the six-week trial period is clear cut.
“We know that congestion will always be an issue in peak periods – that is a fact of life at premiere holiday destinations world-wide,” he said.
“What we are aiming to do is provide multiple options to locals and visitors alike to support a carefree travelling experience to our most popular spots in the Shire.”
The much-loved free holiday bus service has been extended to cover the entire school holidays this year, with free travel on local Sunbus and Translink bus services on six popular bus routes.
The Go Noosa trials also include the testing of roadside digital information boards which will capture live car parking capacity in the Hastings Street precinct and provide alternative ‘green’ travel options.
One of the technical team members working on the digital boards, Gary Swanepoel, said the live system will help travellers to make more informed transport choices.
“Noosa Council have really taken an inspired step forward with embracing this new technology,” Mr Swanepoel said.
“This is a low cost solution to get information out easily and quickly, and really limit the amount of time you might spend searching for parking options. For example, by checking the board you can make a quick decision to park at Noosa Junction then catch a free bus in to Hastings Street.”
Paid parking will be managed by the Tewantin Noosa Lions Club and be available at the Noosa Heads Lions Park every day from Boxing Day to the 13th of January, as well as all week-ends during the busy school holidays.
Traffic controllers will be on hand to help pedestrians cross the roads around Hastings Street as well as assist buses to get in and out of the traffic.
The Go Noosa trials have the support of the Noosa Junction Traders Association. Hastings Street Association, Zero Emissions Noosa Tourism Noosa, Noosa Residents and Ratepayers Association and other stakeholders.
Noosa Junction Association President, Michael Tozer encouraged locals to get behind the trials.
‘If you’re heading into the Junction for some summer fun, leave the car at home and let someone else do the driving,” Mr Tozer said.
“If you’re off to the beach or down to Hastings Street, why not park and grab a coffee, breakfast or provisions in the Junction, before jumping on one of the many free buses.
“There’ll be plenty of signs and information to direct you. Our bars, restaurants and cafes, with their relaxed village vibe, will be ready to welcome you on your return over the hill!”
Hastings Street Association’s Jan Sinclair said Council had put in a huge effort to work closely with the Association and others on these initiatives.
“Our shared goal has been to make it the best possible experience it can be for our visitors and locals and getting people out of their cars and into holiday mode as quickly as possible has been the key,” Ms Sinclair said.
“Our Hastings Street employees are also playing a big role this year with many of them having already made the switch to bikes, scooters and buses instead of their cars.
“In conjunction with our brand new Go Noosa employee rideshare app being trialled over the coming year, we are confident this important group will continue to help ease the pressure on traffic and parking and to do their bit for our stunning environment.”
For more information about the Go Noosa trials including frequently asked questions visit the Noosa Council website at www.noosa.qld.gov.au/go-noosa or call (07) 5329 6500.
Bus timetable information is available at www.translink.com.au/noosa or call 13 12 30 anytime. A weekend timetable will operate on public holidays with most free bus services terminating around 7pm.
Free bus services include
Route 626 – Tewantin to Sunrise Beach via Noosa Heads
Route 627 – Tewantin to Sunshine Beach via Noosa Heads.
Route 628 – Noosa Parklands to Noosa Junction via Noosa Civic.
Route 629 – Tewantin to Noosa Junction via Noosa Civic.
Route 632 – Noosa to Cooran via Cooroy and Pomona.
Route 064 – (Additional temporary service) Peregian Beach to Noosa Heads